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The Forum > Article Comments > Morality under imperialism > Comments

Morality under imperialism : Comments

By John Passant, published 14/7/2008

A new McCarthyism stalks Australia in an attempt to control dissent and free choice.

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This article is a timely way of reminding the submissive little sheep who accept meekly the despotic posturings of governments, that it is THEY who have the ultimate power through the ballot box.

I believe that our memories are much better than politicians and some media commentators believe.
Certainly, we are overloaded by news information, but impressions and reactions are not stifled easily...our memories are long and will be expressed when we sack the transgressors.
Ballots beat bullets.

An example of our taking action against improper legislation was the recent attempt of NSW to use members of the Rural Fire Service and the State Emergeny Services as ex-officio policemen to take action against "annoying behaviour" during World Youth Day.
Quite rightly, the volunteer members of both these organisations told the NSW government to "get stuffed" and refused to become involved.
They were not going to be dragooned into enforcing moral law and it is a good example of applying our personal responsibility not to accept bad legislation.These regulations could be seen as another example of fundamentalists attempting to restrict our rights and freedom.

Because it is evidence of how religion pervades government.
Look at how the outrageous Christian fundamentalist George W. Bush writes the rules for going to war. Closer to home, the NSW Government over-reacts in support of a religious festival, and Kevin 07 has the temerity to make personal moral pronouncements on photographs, as though his opinion counts for something.
It doesn't!
He is elected to run the government, not our personal opinions.
Indeed, as John Passant says, "it's time for those of us who value freedom to fight back against the new Mc.Carthyism" (or Iemmaism).
Posted by Ponder, Monday, 14 July 2008 11:54:46 AM
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I am amazed at the attempt to condone the heinous offences that Belinda Neal is alleged to have committed at the Iguana restaurant.

These are that she intimidated a member of the public (the employee of the restaurant), who was going about his lawful duties, by threatening to use her political position to have the restaurant's licence cancelled.

To compound that offence, she then allegedly conspired to alter statutory declarations made under the Oaths Act, 1900.

According to the media, charges of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice are being considered.

If convicted, Neal should be sentenced to a term of imprisonment of more than twelve months, thus causing her to forfeit her parliamentary seat under section 44 of the Federal constitution.

These charges are about the worst of which a politician can be accused. The public, of course, expects politicians to be perfect, but at the very least they must obey the law. Just like Marcus Einfeld, who I gather is facing his trial in October, politicians and eminent persons will contravene the law at their peril.

None of this, of course, applies to myself. As I do not consider myself to be perfect, I do not consider myself qualified to nominate for any political position.

There seems to be a profound inability on the part of the political elite to appreciate what the public thinks of them (or, at least, to admit it publicly). When politicians were compared to used car salesmen in the NSW parliament some years ago, the salesmen complained at the invidious comparison, and they had to be compared to snake-oil salesmen. One of the main problems at elections is that all parties, instead of trying to demonstrate that their candidate is perfect, content themselves with merely asserting that he is better than the others. One reform that would improve this would be for a compulsory additional candidate to be added to the ballot paper at all elections. This candidate would be "vacant". If "vacant" topped the poll, the seat would not be filled.
Posted by plerdsus, Monday, 14 July 2008 3:36:08 PM
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As a non-academically trained participant I am often left wondering if I am one of a very small elite that actually discusses politics at "The Blue Collar" level. The opinion of almost everybody who is actually "At the coalface" is reflected in this fine article. So many of my workmates and colleagues, peers and interested persons ask the question, "Who actually represents what WE want?". They do not need to be told about The New Morality, the concept of McCarthyism goes right over their heads but nevertheless the points made in this article are exactly what the "Real Voters" are asking.

Who and why do I have to pay so much more for MY alcohol when such a small minority are the target group?
Why are Doctors and unelected bureaucrats making and enforcing policies we had no chance to VOTE on?
Why are so many Christians in Parliament when so few of us even care about religion let alone attend church?
What has happened to real working people making their way into parliament, instead we seem to have a never ending supply of university trained supplicants and sycophants that seem to stand behind the current PM nodding their heads like those toy dogs we all had in our car rear windows so many years ago....?
Exactly HOW does Carbon Credits and it's trading work in easy to understand terms and WHO exactly is making the money?
Why am I denigrated and abused for even suggesting that we do not all slavishly believe everything that is written about Global Warming?
Why hasn't marijuana been legalised?

And the list could go on!!
John Passant, you are to be commended for asking the questions that MANY are asking who are feeling more and more disenfranchised, alienated from decision making and becoming very cynical about ANY politician and our system of "Democracy".

If something is not done soon, like a really alternative political movement that is not going to be suppressed and ridiculed by our monopolistic press barons, (fat chance), then I can see it "ending in tears".

Bravo Mr Passant, excellent article.
Posted by Buck, Monday, 14 July 2008 7:05:36 PM
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I found it interesting that legitimate concerns about governments abusing power over ordinary people is used to defend a government member who has appeared to use real or perceived power to intimidate members of the public and then appears to have compounded the issue by attempts to intimidate others into supporting a coverup.

If Wilson has done similar please supply the details, my impression is that the nickname was for his debating style amongst collegues, not for bullying those with less access to power.

We should be vigilant against ongoing attempts to reduce our freedom as protection against an unlikely threat. We should also be vigilant against those who think it's no big deal when pollies threaten member of the public for personal gain or interest.

Posted by R0bert, Monday, 14 July 2008 8:21:32 PM
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Thankyou for the insightful article. If only our politicians understood the important difference between ethics and morals, it would help. Kevin Rudds disgust at the photos was putting his own hangups on public display. That kind of attitude is why parents can't photograph their own children at sports carnivals without feeling like suspects.

Less than 15% of Australians attend a church on a regular basis and yet parliament is over represented by christians. Most commonly those who wear religion as a badge and practise hypocrisy on a regular basis. If they prayed to the invisible pink unicorn in Parliament I would not feel any less confident in their intellectual capacity to hold their position.

We follow America into all of their mistakes, their imperialistic motives of silencing dissent and their moralistic pandering while avoiding the real issues of ethics and personal freedom. Why can't more commentators and journalists do their job. Currently most may as well be employed directly by the Catholic PR department. Are they lazy or just lost the ability to practise critical thinking?
Posted by Nicevolve, Monday, 14 July 2008 10:06:12 PM
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Almost all the posts had me in agreement, but poor old plodding Plerdsus who feels the predations of the four horse-people of the apocalypse combined, pale into imsignificance against that Great Outrage of the Eons; Bel'n'Del arguing with restaurant staff trying to kick them out before they had had time to finish their meal.
Buck, am blue collar too. It's the best thing you can call yourself.
My understanding is that huge sections of the working classes in this country have always valued thought, discourse and literacy. They fought for access to education for their kids and supported organisation like WEA ( worker education at night schools ) as they had to fight for so many other things.
It's true that tabloid media have dumbed down our community through pandering to the basest instincts of humanity, in order that the civil society generations of people fought hard to build, becomes easier to control and plunder.
But every so often the shallow hypocrisy of those who run things; who say, "do as we say, not as we do" is shown up. It's when they get lazy, complacent,arrogant and finally make a mistake to show up the contradiction between what they are and what they say they are
( also true of Del and Bel, to be fair to Plerdsus! ).
This has just hapened at a more serious level with Cardinal Pell.
Because there was just enough instinct for the truth left in our half-brainwashed culture and a few journalists still interested in the truth, working for an organisation set up by democracy to ensure at least one bias-free source of news, we got a reprieve.
But the McCarthyism is there and the effort to stay free and informed continues as before, for the "price of freedom is eternal vigilance".
Posted by paul walter, Tuesday, 15 July 2008 4:01:24 AM
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